Listen: Coffee Conversations on Masur Fire Recovery

May 3, 2017

KEDM is hosted its first Coffee Conversations at CC's Coffee House in Monroe on Friday, May 5th from 6 to 9 a.m. It was a  chance to see and meet KEDM staff and personalities, and hear interviews with local newsmakers. 

Masur Museum  Executive Director Evie Stewart and Curator of Collections and Exhibitions Ben Hickey joined Jay for a discussion about recent fire damage to the permanent collection at the Masur, the ramifications of the damage, and the plans for recovery and restoration.  

According to Stewart and Hickey, the first part of the process is to move the art to a climate-controlled environment. According to Stewart, that work is perhaps half done so far. Staff are documenting the condition of each piece as it's moved, then packing the art for transport.

Next, the cleaning begins.

"We've already started working with a conservator who specializes in restoring damaged artwork. In a few weeks, she'll be on-site to start the work," says Hickey. "She'll also be training volunteers and museum staff on how to clean the layer of soot that's covered everything in the building."

Stewart adds, "We have a few pieces that we've asked the conservator to work on. She's the most experienced, and will personally take charge of several of the museum's most valuable works."

Hickey says the museum is planning to use the cleaning process as an exhibit to educate the public about art restoration. He explains the museum will be open for visitors to see what it takes to clean the soot and debris from each piece of art.

To volunteer for the restoration efforts, call the Masur Museum at 329-2237 or email